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The word Chlorella is a composite of the Latin diminutive suffix ella meaning "small" and the Greek chloros meaning "green." The organism Chlorella is single-celled green alga known to contain chlorophyll in high concentrations. Through photosynthesis Chlorella multiplies rapidly, requiring only carbon dioxide, water, sunlight, and small quantities of minerals to reproduce. Chlorella is an attractive food due to its high protein content as well as its chlorophyll content.

German biochemist Otto Heinrich Warburg received a Nobel Prize in 1931 for his study of photosynthesis in Chlorella. Many scientists believe Chlorella could serve as a potential alternate source of food and energy because its photosynthetic efficiency can, in theory, reach 8%, making Chlorella comparable to other highly efficient crops such as sugar cane. Mass-production methods are being used to cultivate Chlorella in large, artificial circular ponds.

When dried, Chlorella contains about 45% protein, 20% carbohydrate, 20% fat and 5% fiber. It is also high in enzymes, vitamins and minerals, including vitamin A, C, B-complex, phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, zinc, iodine, and iron. Chlorella is a natural detoxifier that helps to remove heavy metals from the body.

Potential Benefits of Chlorella

  • Powerful antioxidant
  • Detoxifier
  • Aids digestion and constipation
  • Freshens your breath with chlorophyll
  • Has alkalizing properties

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Principal Author: M. Ofiyeva
Date of Initial Publication: 10/02/2008
Article Last Updated: 03/10/2011